Libyan Missiles on the Loose

(Washington Post) David Ignatius - The spread of shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles from Libya after the overthrow of Gaddafi's regime poses a growing threat to commercial planes. A State Department official said in February that Gaddafi had acquired 20,000 of these weapons, and that only 5,000 of them had been secured through a $40 million U.S. program to buy up loose missiles. Here's the scary part: Two former CIA counterterrorism officers told me last week that technicians recently refurbished 800 of these man-portable air-defense systems (known as MANPADS) - some for an African jihadist group called Boko Haram that is often seen as an ally of al-Qaeda - for possible use against commercial jets flying into Niger, Chad and perhaps Nigeria.

2012-05-09 00:00:00

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